Growing up my great grandparents lived down in the country on a rather large farm and we would all take off down there sometimes just to visit, sometimes for dinner and sometimes to pick blackberries and to me that trip seemed like it took FOREVER to get there and honestly I don’t know if whoever was doing the driving drove very, very slow or if it was just because I was young but it’s only about a 10 mile trip, if that! We would all pile in the car with no air and it was hotter than blue blazes, windows rolled down, hair blowing in the wind. We always had to stop off at this old wooden store about half way there (five miles and what seemed like 2 hours into this trip) where my cousin and I would run in a grab us some Sixlets and 6 ounce bottles of ice cold Coke. Now this was back in the day when Sixlets came six in a single pack for about a penny a pack and Coke bottles required a tool to remove the lid and a deposit and we would munch on them the other 2 hours or 5 miles there.
We arrived with our empty (clean) milk jugs and long sleeved shirts, because blackberry bushes have briers an chiggers, those danged ole’ chiggers. Mom would remind us we had to keep a watch out for snakes and we would hit the blackberry brier patch wide open. We all survived, a few scratches, chiggers, no snake bites and quite a few blackberry jams and cobblers and a few years later, we are all grown up with kids of our own, the old house has burned down the farm has been sold, but I bet those blackberry bushes are loaded just waiting to be picked!
So I am thinking about a blueberry and blackberry field trip to a You Pick Farm for me, my daughter and the two girls she babysits. Gather up some buckets,grab my camera, pick up some Sixlets, forget the rolled down windows we will crank up the air and off we will go. I will remind them to watch for snakes and pray there are no chiggers……and hopefully we will have a day they will remember forever.
I love to pick them, freeze them, make jams and jellies to have available all year around. We love fresh blueberry muffins and pancakes and a blackberry cobbler with some homemade ice cream sounds divine right about now. It’s the summer season and great for picking fresh fruits and vegetables. If you don’t have your own garden there just may be a place close to you where you can go and pick your own and usually they are at a much lower price than what you find in the grocery store.
I found a website that has all the information you will need to find a you pick farm in your area. Head on over to Pick Your Own, scroll on down and you can search by state and then it is broken down by county. Pick Your Own also has links to more information on canning, freezing and preserving and much more, like Christmas Tree farms and corn mazes.
So what are you waiting on? Plan a day out with your kids and go picking …don’t forget the camera and the Sixlets! You will all have a blast, have some fruit for your fresh fruit for cooking and freezing and memories that last a lifetime…..I promise!